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I’m an Australian citizen looking to work in America for a working holiday, but I can’t find a visa that applies to me. I don’t have the qualifications for an E-3 or H-B1, and I wouldn’t be working in jobs that would fall under H-B2. Is there an option that would work for me?

Additionally, I work as a freelance developer. Would I be allowed to continue to work in America under the visa waiver program?

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    If you're young enough, there's a working holiday option for Canada, if that's close enough. As far as I know, the US and Australia have no such arrangement (neither do Canada and the US for that matter). – Jim MacKenzie Mar 25 '18 at 3:13
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No, there isn't. The US and Australia do not have a working holiday visa arrangement, and the VWP explicitly does not permit work.

The closest option would be the E-3 visa, but this is similar to the H-1B visa (minus the tight quotas) and requires a sponsoring employer in the United States that the visa is tied to, so it's not really practical for freelancing.

  • I think the J-1 visa is rather more similar to the working holiday visa than is the E-3 visa. – phoog Mar 25 '18 at 10:36
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There are J-1 "exchange visitor" programs that are used for seasonal workers. These require a sponsor who will employ you; before and after the program you have a 30-day "grace period" during which you can travel around the US. Some sponsors have made the news for keeping their employees in rather exploitative conditions, but others are legitimate. I think this kind of program is rather more similar to a working holiday visa than is the E-3 visa.

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